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Let the bidding begin: Dick Cheney's writing a book with 'a few scores to settle'

The 1902 desk of President Theodore Roosevelt used by many presidents and vice presidents over the years and signed by each before leaving office

Oh-oh.

Yes, yes, Dick Cheney was a wrestler in school, like his buddy Donald Rumsfeld. And wrestlers going out there on the mat to grapple aggressively and viciously for six long minutes with opponents are rarely shy about confrontations.

However, most everybody pictured Vice President Cheney next week heading out of Dodge after the inauguration and virtually four decades of inside government experience -- and fishing, enjoying Wyoming, family, six grandchildren, hunting, all that.

He will.

But Cheney, the silent sly one who's words were mostly saved for the ears of the president, just told Sean Hannity today that he's seriously considering writing a book.

"I never have," Cheney said. "and my family has been bugging me about it. I've got 40 years since I came  to town to stay 12 months. I've got a lot of stories to tell. And a few scores to settle."

And he laughed. "I'm going out with a good heart," Cheney added. "It's been a tremendous experience.  It's been great serving with this president. And I think we did some good work. And I do look forward to family time, and a little more time on the stream and out in the fields. But I don't plan to retire yet."

Cheney, a Nebraska native who grew up in Wyoming and represented that state for five House terms, arrived in Washington in 1969, began work in the Nixon administration and became chief of staff for President Gerald Ford. In 1989 he became secretary of Defense for Bush I and oversaw two of the larger military operations in modern times -- in Panama and the first Gulf War.

These next few days will be Cheney's fourth presidential transition, after the Nixon resignation, the Carter inauguration of 1977, Clinton in 1993 and now 2009. The stories he might tell.

Cheney also told Hannity:

He's been in the government/political business long enough to know you rarely get credit for what doesn't happen. But he worries the longer the nation goes after 2001.

"I think the thing that I sense most is that as we get farther and farther away from 9/11, we've got more and more people sort of taking it all for granted, getting pretty complacent about the world we live in, and lose sight of the fact that there are some very bad actors out there still trying hard to find ways to kill more Americans."

He said like most Americans he wishes President-elect Obama well starting with next week's inauguration, but as a conservative, he expects to have major differences over time with a liberal Democrat.

In 1996, Cheney seriously considered running for the Republican nomination eventually won by Bob Dole, who lost to Bill Clinton. But he decided against it then and forever more. Which Cheney thinks helped him be a more effective vice president because everyone knew he had no agenda but President Bush's.

Of course, that situation also left the Republican Party with no experienced and well-known political heir-apparent now and for some time to come.

The book, on the other hand, will be Cheney's alone.

-- Andrew Malcolm

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Photo credit: David Bohrer / The White House (Dick Cheney's new signature in the 1902 desk of President Theodore Roosevelt used by many presidents and vice presidents over the years and signed by each before leaving office).

 
Comments () | Archives (21)

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I am sure a few dozen people will read it. We know W can't, as he can't read. Maybe Laura or Condi will read it to him so he can learn what really happened during thee last 8 years.
Chris

"Which Cheney thinks helped him be a more effective vice president because everyone knew he had no agenda but President Bush's."

That's inside out. Bush was simply a hand puppet for Voldemort Cheney. All the evil done in the last 8 years was dreamed up by He Who Must Not be Named and executed by his henchmen.

Possible titles:
1. "Shot Gun"
2. "Shoot Me With Your Best Shot"
3. "I Shot The Law and the Law Won"

rummy and cheney are wrestlers? franken is also a wrestler; perhaps they could meet in the ring!
i'd like to see that.

Cheney, go away and stay away.

Likely any book Cheney pens would be fiction...albeit not as steamy as Lynn Cheney's. Yawn. One week and counting...

Cheney will attempt to codify some of the lies that have been his talking points for many years. His paranoia about a sneak attack on the part of Soviet communism became real but it was extremist Muslims who carried out the attack. He had been preparing fro such an attack for decades and decided it was time to show the world that the USA clould sink to anyone's level and maybe much lower.

This man is a creature of the Cold War of the last century and one whose absolute power corrupted absolutely. He has served his friends and himself well. A man of self-interest and dedication to his viewpoint. He may be loyal but he is not loyal to the American people, our constitution, or our democratic republic. He may be a patriot but not a patriot of our democratic republic and our founding principles. He may think of himself honorable, but many of our most darkest have that viewpoint...his endgoal justifies any means. His shadow imperial presidency will be a studied case for posterity and we only hope there are strong lessons for all of us. From any perspective he is a criminal and there are many well to do and happy thugs in the world who write books.

Other than the right wing fundamentalist zealots, who would care what cheney had to say? He may be able to write the book in prison.

'SO?" YAWN

Godspeed Obama

Only thing certain; it will be fiction.

Dick Cheney can be explained if you read the book : The Franklin Affair. It has a forward by now deceased ex-CIA director William Colby. It's not pretty.

Good, it's about time that Cheney and Bush set the record straight to the dellusional dems who have lied through their teeth. I hope Cheney names names and puts them to shame. Cheney will have the last laugh. Kudos to Cheney!

Well Dick I suppose it hurts to be known as a betrayer of one's oath, but when you said you would protect and defend the Constitution I think it meant the original document not your daily walk through the walled compound to the bunker followed by a good grunt. BTW, if you rough up the pages of your book it will make do for the TP. Farewell and happy waterboarding.

Stay tuned... There may well be several presidential pardons yet to be issued. The candidates include: Cheney, Alberto Gonzales, Harriet Miers, and a cast of many more. It is clear that President-elect Obama does not want to squander DOJ resources on the skeletons in Cheney's or Bush's closets. That is a wise decision. However, prosecutors on the local, state and even the federal level may have different plans.

Mr. Cheney has qualities that frankly scare many people who worship at the alters of rock stars and flip-flop politicians. He, like Mr. George W. Bush, is direct, brutally honest, highly intelligent, patriotic and loyal. I want to publically thank him and his good friend Donald Rumsfeld for the service they have provided to The United States and the free world these last eight years. The hateful remarks made by hostile people here and abroad are unjustified and were hurtful to those who admire this great public servant.

As he leaves Washingtion, I am glad to hear that he will continue to be active in the public arena and look forward to reading any and all books that he writes. Thank you Vice-President Cheney for a job well done. I predict history will show you to be the greatest VP we have ever had!
Birmingham, Alabama

Why would I want to spend, or, er, save up my pennies while I pay for my existing hospital bills for the rest of my life, while I've been paying his for the last eight years, to spend it on filth like a Dick Cheney autobiography?

A Cheney AB is way beyond offensive!

Cheney has it backward. The American people and the laws have scores to settle with him.

Any book this guy writes will definately appear in the section labled "fiction"

Can there possibly be any "scores" left to settle? Didn't Cheney get just about anything he wanted from his tame president and eager-to-please Congress? Hasn't he been promised the privilege of remaining free after his crimes? Must he also waste his time and ours in vain swine cosmetology efforts?

Good riddence to a tough ol codger. It's too bad you couldn't get that fight with China started before everything got interrupted by 9/11. Can't wait to hear what you've got to say in your book since you've been so honest and forthright up to this point in your public service tenure. Frankly between you and George, I can't figure out which one did the most damage. I am sure it will all come out in the wash if not in a few indictments to be handed down in good time. Possible title for your book: How the hell did we not get Impeached?


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About the Columnist
A veteran foreign and national correspondent, Andrew Malcolm has served on the L.A. Times Editorial Board and was a Pulitzer finalist in 2004. He is the author of 10 nonfiction books and father of four. Read more.
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